Autumn Essentials

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OK, so the weather isn’t currently playing ball (I was at an outdoor party on the weekend, and only thought to put a sweater on at about 11pm. Crazy September weather), but I promise that autumn is actually coming. And, as always, it brings with it its own style dilemmas.

Transition time from cold to warm and warm to cold weather is one of the trickiest times of year to dress, I always think. Too cold for flip flops, to warm for winter boots. Too cold for no coat, too warm for an overcoat. Might rain, but you’ll cook in your winter raincoat if it does.

Over the years I’ve put together a little internal essentials list that gets me through the Spring and Autumn changeable weather. It’s not exactly a capsule wardrobe in its own right, but when added to my wardrobe makes the changing seasons that little bit less tricky.

Pac Mac A pack a mac. Seriously. I’m not going to pretend it’s the single most stylish thing you’ve ever worn, but actually there are some half decent ones out there. I am the proud owner of a leopard print pac a parka that I think cost me the princely sum of £8, and has saved me from approximately 4,357 rain showers.
Ankle boots. Pick your style, pick your colour, but whatever you do pick a pair that can be worn in the rain (if you’re like me and can’t give up the suede, just make sure you spray them regularly). Perfect for when the weather isn’t quite warm enough for trainers or slip ons, but those full on winter boots will leave your feet begging for mercy.
Merino Sweater A merino sweater. I love merino wool. Warmer than cotton, cheaper than cashmere, and thin and lightweight enough to be flung into a bag if the weather suddenly perks up. I am a big fan of Uniqlo’s merino sweaters, which come in a range of styles and necklines.
A lightweight cashmere scarf. I love scarves. Cashmere is fabulously warm when it’s cold, but as a natural fibre also breathes incredible well, so won’t cause you to overheat.
A hat. Will you start to sense a theme if I suggest cashmere or merino again? I love Cos for their reasonably priced cashmere beanies, but if you really want to be bang on trend, bobble hats are apparently quite the thing to be seen in this winter.
Sunglasses. The glare from the sun being that bit lower in the sky can be alarming when driving, and plain irritating the rest of the time.
Thin tops. Once the weather starts to get a little chillier, rather than starting to add bulky sweaters and coats, I like to add a thin long sleeved top under my normal clothes. I was thrilled to see that Kettlewell have reintroduced their fabulous silky crew, scoop and polo necks, as these make the most perfect thermal layers, but come in colours other than black, white and grey.
wristWarmers Wrist warmers again, perfect for adding a bit of warmth if there’s a sudden nip in the air.
lipbalm Lip balm. I used to be devoted to Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream, but was caught out without it recently and bought a tube of lanolips, and I have to say I may just be converted. It will also cheerfully do double duty as cuticle cream, dry skin treatment and magic wound ointment for small children who fall over lots.

And if you’re desperate for actual capsule wardrobe inspiration, fear not! I have a slew of capsule wardrobe posts coming your way over the next month or two as we head into autumn and then winter (and Christmas party season!).

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